Remember what was supposed to be the biggest weakness of the Red Sox going into the season? Well I guess this is why we play the games. I said all offseason how you can’t judge a bullpen until they actually start pitching because relief pitching is the most inconsistent aspect of the game from year to year. You simply can’t project it. Through their first 20 games of the season, the Red Sox relievers lead the league in bullpen ERA. While much has been said about the impressive Red Sox rotation, the rotation hasn’t even been the best part of our pitching staff to this point. In just over 50 innings of work, Red Sox relievers have an ERA of 2.45 and a WHIP of 1.17. They’ve allowed only 42 hits while walking 18, striking out 38 and allowing 0.70 home runs per 9 innings pitched. Theo Epstein, who typically has quite a bit of trouble putting bullpens together, seems to have done a rather superb job this year. The back end of the bullpen, consisting of Donnelly, Okajima and Papelbon, has allowed a single run through 20.1 innings pitched. Over that span they’ve allowed only 5 hits while striking out 29. Best of all, the three relievers all together only cost the Red Sox a base salary of $3.0255 million for 2007. An above average bullpen would give the Red Sox a big edge that they’ve lacked for quite some time.